Polygraph Truth

9/05/07–Dr. Phil puts a woman to the test–the polygraph test. Armed with an expert polygraph interpreter, the good doctor reads results. In the test a statement such as “My husband does not use internet porn.” does not prove whether the husband does or doesn’t; it proves only that the wife believes he doesn’t. Too often, Dr. Phil assumed the polygraph statement was truth, not the belief of the person taking the test. If a polygraph test is to be a test of truth, it’s questions should be prefaced by “I believe” or “I think”; and, even if they were, the only truth here is that an opinion is believed. Adequate investigation of the alleged "crime’ is the only way to get beyond the he said, she said, they said relativisms and to arrive at anything near what actually occurred. Agree? Disagree?

Good point.

I have a feeling that Dr. Phil is only after ratings and controversy so any person giving polygraph tests would be asking question designed for such. Do Government testers do the same? Can they rig the questions?

Its possible, which is probably one reason they are inadmissable in court.

Court TV shows use polys too as evidence. Are TV court shows legal judicial courts or are they just mediators?

They may be inadmissable in court, yet they have ruined many a reputation by inference! I suppose a question such as “Did you murder your wife?” might yield some information, unless the testee is really good at lying–to the extent that he/she believes the lies or is able to pull a B. C. ploy by asking, “What does murder mean?”